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  Hydra nematocysts

Lab_3b-17a

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This slide shows two discharged nematocysts from Hydra, a small freshwater cnidarian.  These organelles contain a coiled thread-like filament that can be rapidly everted like a harpoon when triggered by contact with an object or a chemical stimulus.  In many cnidarians, these nematocysts contain powerful venoms that can be used for defense or to capture prey.

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